If Trump were a Shakespeare Character

 Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

I had every intention of writing a piece this morning about revenge ghosts in Shakespeare’s plays, but the recent events in American politics cannot go unnoticed. As a woman I would be remiss if I did not comment on the latest news from the dumpster fire that is the Trump campaign.

The release of the “Trump Tapes” has made it clear that this man could “literally walk out onto 5th Avenue and shot someone, and not lose any voters”. But that doesn’t mean the rest of us should just sit back and let him. The view of his supporters that claim “men talk this way” sickens me. No, men do not talk this way. Even early 17th century misogynist( by today’s standards) playwrights did not talk this way!

Elizabethan theater is known for being extremely bawdy- a word that means vulgar, lewd, and crude. Yet if we look at Trump’s own words on women, we find that he takes the term to its lowest form; gutter speak. If Shakespeare had stooped this low we would most certainly not celebrate his work. If we did dare speak about him, we’d be talking about the low point in English theater.

I’ve heard several supporters on TV today saying that Trump’s words don’t matter, and what he said back then (for one of these quotes, back then was the last debate) has no bearing on what he does now. Bullshit. Words matter! We all know words are used to symbolize our thoughts and views. They are often stand-ins for our actions. Words express our desires, and in Trump’s case the words he uses symbolize his view of women as a whole and how he thinks they can and should be treated.

To prove it, I’ve taken five of Shakespeare’s characters and inserted some of Trump’s actual words about women. It is my hope that those who are trying to defend Trump by dismissing his words are taken aback when viewing them in this context. If you are sharing this with someone who is unfamiliar with Shakespeare’s plays I’ve italicized Trump’s words.

If Trump were a Shakespeare Character.

Romeo/Trump:
O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!
Its seems she hangs upon the cheek of night
Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope’s ear;
Beauty too rich for use, for earth to dear!
I’ve got to use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her. “
You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful
I just start kissing them.
It’s like a magnet.
Just kiss.
I don’t even wait.”

Lear/Trump:
Tell me, my daughters
Since now we divest us both of rule,
Interest in territory, cares of state,
Which you shall we say doth love us most?
If you weren’t my daughters, I’d probably try to date you.
Benedict/Trump:
What, my dear Lady Distain!
Are you yet living?
You’re a fat ugly pig
Everyone agrees with me.
Richard III/Trump
I am determined to prove a villain
You know, it doesn’t really matter what [they] write as long as you’ve got a young and beautiful piece of ass.

Petruchio/Trump: Who knows not where a wasp does wear his sting?
Katherine: In his tongue.
Petruchio/Trump: Whose tongue?
Katherine: Yours, if you talk of tales. And so farewell.
Petruchio/Trump: What, with my tongue in your tail? Nay, come again good Kate. I am a gentleman, though I could grab your pussy because I’m wealthy and women let me do it.

I would like to give credit where credit is due. My roommate and I were talking about Trump and Shakespeare this morning. We had both read different articles this on the very subject. I read Stephen Greenblatt’s Shakespeare Explains the 2016 Election while she read Aryeh Cohen-Wade’s Donald Trump Performs Shakespeare’s Soliloquies.  I recommend both.  After talking about the train-wreck of a human I decided to switch topics this morning and write this piece.

Works Cited

Esquire Magazine

Entertainment Tonight

ABC News

NBC Debate

@RealDonaldJTrump

The Complete Shakespeare, Yale Unversity Press

What if Polonius had to give Laertes advice today?

What if Polonius had to give Laertes advice today?

Here is the original fatherly advice

Yet here, Laertes? Aboard, aboard, for shame!
The wind sits in the shoulder of your sail,
And you are stay’d for. There- my blessing with thee!
And these few precepts in thy memory
Look thou character. Give thy thoughts no tongue
Nor any unproportion’d thought his act.
Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar:
Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,
Grapple them unto thy soul with hoops of steel;
But do not dull thy palm with entertainment 550
Of each new-hatch’d, unfledg’d comrade. Beware
Of entrance to a quarrel; but being in,
Bear’t that th’ opposed may beware of thee.
Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice;
Take each man’s censure, but reserve thy judgment.
Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy,
But not express’d in fancy; rich, not gaudy;
For the apparel oft proclaims the man,
And they in France of the best rank and station
Are most select and generous, chief in that.
Neither a borrower nor a lender be;
For loan oft loses both itself and friend,
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.
This above all- to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Farewell. My blessing season this in thee!

And now, his take on the modern world.

Yes, this is Bill Murry as Polonius.
Yes, this is Bill Murry as Polonius.

Laertes, you’re still here? Shame on you, get on board! The airline security waiting lines are long and they won’t hold the plane just for you.
Here, I give you my blessing and some fatherly advice.
Don’t say what you think on Twitter, and be careful what acts you post on Facebook. What happens in Vegas may stay in Vegas but pictures on Facebook are forever.
Be friendly, but don’t share your personal information with anyone online.
Just because someone “Friends” you on Facebook does not mean he is your true friend. Make sure those friends thou hast are real and not catfishing you.
Do not dull thy palm with each new-hatched, unfledged comrade; you never know who washes his hands after using the bathroom.
Beware of entrance to a quarrel but being in, bear’t that th’ opposer is not carrying a gun.
Give every man they ear but few thy texts.
Take each man’s censure but reserve thy judgment. Be skeptical, especially if someone tells you, “I know is true because I read it on the Internet”.
Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy, but don’t fall for labels or the latest from Abercrombie and Fitch. Jesus, those guys look like assholes.
Neither a borrower nor a lender be. Stay away from Kickstarter and GoFundMe. As the old saying goes, if you want to lose a friend, loan him twenty dollars.
This above all: to thine own self be true; self-awareness will save you from years of therapy. And it must follow, as the night the day, don’t pretend to be false on the Internet, anyone can now run a background check.

Farewell. My blessings. Text me when you get to France!